Jun 17, 2019

The 27th National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) museum in the country is a two-storey structure in Baliuag, Bulacan honoring Mariano Ponce, a nationalist who’s one of the founders of the propaganda group and newspaper La Solidaridad in 1888.

Located in Brgy. Tibag, the museum is a scaled-down replica of Ponce’s original estate that used to stand in the same location but burned down in 1962.

Photo courtesy of Edgar Allan M. Sembrano for Inquirer.net

The museum, which opened on May 23, is a great way to introduce the public to the unsung hero hailing from Baliuag, said NHCP chair Rene Escalante, adding that most Filipinos are only familiar with the likes of more famous propagandistas Jose Rizal, Graciano Lopez-Jaena, and Marcelo H. del Pilar.

But even Ponce’s long list of credentials is displayed throughout the property starting from his birth in 1863 and adolescence all the way to his life as a revolutionary, a folklorist and, later on, a historian.

An arts graduate from Colegio de San Juan de Letran, Ponce authored history books such as “Historia de Bulacan” and “Wika at Lahi” both published in 1917.

Photo courtesy of Edgar Allan M. Sembrano for Inquirer.net

He also studied medicine at the University of Santo Tomas (UST) in 1885, which he finished at the University of Barcelona in Spain two years after.

From 1897 to 1903, Ponce figured in the revolutionary government group in exile called Hongkong Junta led by Emilio Aguinaldo.

He was briefly a director of two newspapers called El Renacimiento and Muling Pagsilang from 1908 to 1909. He is also credited for the passing of the law that created the National Library as the representative of Bulacan in the Philippine Assembly from 1910 to 1912.

Photo courtesy of Edgar Allan M. Sembrano for Inquirer.net

The museum houses some of Ponce’s belongings such as an old watch, UST school records from 1886 as well as reproductions of documents of his death on May 23, 1918.

The historical marker placed on his monument, which bore his date of death as May 25th has also been corrected to May 23.

The Museo ni Mariano Ponce is the fourth NHCP museum in Bulacan to add to the current roster, which include Museo ng Republika ng 1899 and Museo ng Kasaysayang Pampulitika ng Pilipinas, which are both in Malolos, and the Museo ni Marcelo H. del Pilar in Bulacan.


Header photo courtesy of Jovan Soriano of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines

Photos courtesy of Edgar Allan M. Sembrano for Inquirer.net

Read more:

26 history museums all over the country that you can visit for free

Ayala Museum is now on YouTube, uploading videos on PH art and ethnography

PSA: Ayala Museum will be closed for renovations starting June 1

TAGS: bulacan Hong Kong Junta La Solidaridad Mariano Ponce museum NHCP Philippine history propaganda movement